Kentucky Bars, Restaurants Set For Limited Reopening Monday
Kentucky bars, restaurants, and gyms will be able to return to partial capacity Monday with the expiration of Gov. Andy Beshear's latest round of coronavirus executive orders.
Even as the state marked another record day of new cases Thursday with 4,324, the governor said the overall slowing of growth in cases and a positivity rate slowly inching downward suggests the orders worked as intended.
Beshear told reporters the three-week closure of bars and restaurants was always meant to be a time-limited "shock to the system."
"We believe that we have gotten far enough past Thanksgiving that the reopening will not create a superspreader event," he explained.
The administration is also crafting new guidance they believe will enable schools in red zone counties to restart some in-person classes in January. With nearly all Kentucky counties designated as red or "critical" zones with regard to COVID-19 spread, the governor is now proposing schools in those regions could restart some traditional learning on at least two conditions: first, they offer a virtual option for every class, and second, they ensure "real protections" for educators and staff heading back into school buildings.
Beshear has faced questions from GOP lawmakers about the science behind the decision to shutter all K-12 schools. This week, the American Medical Association filed a brief in support of the governor's orders, saying they are "based on sound scientific considerations."
THURSDAY KENTUCKY COVID-19 NUMBERS:
- 4,324 new cases
- 28 deaths
- 9.13% positivity rate
- 1,756 hospitalized
- 442 in ICU
- 231 on ventilator
FAYETTE COUNTY NUMBERS:
- 451 new cases
- 3 deaths